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Understanding Dog Behavior: Common Signals and What They Mean



Understanding Dog Behavior: Common Signals and What They Mean

Last Updated on June 26, 2024 by Dogs Vets

Whenever you are inviting a dog into your life, then, it opens up the most astonishing new chapter of mutual communication and understanding. Learning to interpret the body language of your puppy plays the real secret to the ideal relationship with your furry companion.

The relationship is built over the thousands of years of friendship that evolved into the most distinctive language of postures, gestures, and expressions.

Dogs, at times, were wild animals that eventually came to find a place alongside humans; learning to read and respond to our cues helps us understand theirs. It is the most astonishing endeavor, from the wild wolves to the beloved members of the family, that created a deeper bond underpinned by the extraordinary ability to communicate across this line of species.


The Language of Body Signals

The small dog breeds excel in their non-verbal communication that employs their physical cues, expressing an entire range of intentions and emotions. Knowing about these bodily signals offers you the key knowledge of the emotional state of your dog:

Tilting Head to One Side

Dogs often tilt their heads whenever they are uncertain about their interests. They show this kind of behavior whenever they await more information, mainly from a trainer. Additionally, they tilt their heads to listen to a sound and accurately determine its source.

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Shaking Head

Taking the example of Mini Bernedoodle Puppies, they  would shake their head whenever they are relieved from tension. They would behave in this manner after they become alert or aggressive. Additionally, you can check their dog’s body language, who was waiting eagerly for something.


A dog would often yawn whenever they are under stress or face any threat as it would help ease their tension and pressure. A would often show this type of behavior if they are tired, confused, or threatened. Additionally, the dog would behave in this manner whenever they meet with other canines.

Licking Lips

A dog would often lick his lips whenever they are uncertain or stressed. At times the body language would indicate that your canine companion is active physically. Additionally, if you find them licking the lips of other dogs, then you should understand that they are ready to make friends with them, and it is the behavior often common with puppies.

Showing Teeth and Biting

Whenever your canine friend retracts his lips to show teeth, then he is aggressive or revealing his dominance. It would be best if you were careful whenever they show their teeth, as he would end up biting you. If the behavior is often accompanied by muzzle wrinkling or snarling, then you should know that your furry companion is angry. It is advised not to come closer to any dog showing this behavior.

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Your four-legged companion would pant whenever he was overheating or suffering from a heatstroke. Dogs often cool down to regulate their body temperature. A few dogs adopt this kind of behavior to relieve stress or pain.

Barking and Yelping

Whenever your dog barks rapidly or loudly, then he would act this out of aggression or has sensed danger. The soft and short bark indicates that your dog is friendly and wishes to play, especially if they are near a pool. If that is the case, then you should know everything about swimming for dogs. If your dog shows a sudden sharp yelp, then you should know that your canine friend is in a lot of pain.



If your furry companion produces a low or medium growl with or without bark, then he reveals his protective side; he gets threatened or becomes territorial as he becomes more aggressive and attacks animals and people. Furthermore, your dog would produce a soft growl if he is alert, contented, anxious, or in a playful mood.


Your dog often produces a long howl if it feels lonely. Due to this, several dogs announce their existence to other canines or even individuals. Whenever they produce a short howl, you should understand that they are excited or satisfied. A dog also mimics other sounds.

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Whining and Whimpering

When your dog produces a low, short whimper or whine, it shows that he is anxious, excited, or submissive. A prolonged whimper or whine shows that he is in pain or discomfort especially with a collar so it is important to use a training collar on small dogs. Most dogs use this type of body language to call for attention.

Opening Eyes and Staring

If your dog keeps their eyes open, then you should know that he is on great alert. If he is giving an intense stare, that is accompanied by narrowing eyes as they try to be threatened or dominant. If they show the whites of the eyes, then he is threatened and wishes to attack.


If you care for or work with dogs, you should understand their behavior and body language with the help of our guide. You should also know whether or not your dog loves you if you have a good relationship with him.


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Dog behavior

Strategies for Safer Dog Interactions in Austin’s Neighborhoods



Strategies for Safer Dog Interactions in Austin’s Neighborhoods

Last Updated on June 24, 2024 by Dogs Vets

Strategies for Safer Dog Interactions in Austin’s Neighborhoods


Austin is known for its pet-friendly atmosphere, with numerous parks, trails, and communities welcoming dogs and their owners. However, this increased interaction between dogs and people has led to a rise in dog-related incidents. Dog attacks can be traumatic and result in serious injuries, both physical and psychological.

Understanding the factors contributing to these incidents and implementing effective prevention strategies is crucial for maintaining safety in Austin’s neighborhoods.

More reports of dog attacks surfacing make awareness and preventive measures more important than ever. An injury firm in Austin can provide valuable assistance to those affected by dog attacks, but ideally, steps should be taken to avoid these situations altogether. This article explores the key strategies for preventing dog attacks and ensuring the safety of both residents and their canine companions in Austin’s vibrant communities.


Understanding the Causes of Dog Attacks

Dog attacks often result from a combination of factors related to the dog’s behavior and the environment. One primary cause is a need for proper training and socialization.

Dogs not adequately socialized may react aggressively when they feel threatened or encounter unfamiliar situations. Training helps dogs learn how to interact appropriately with people and other animals, reducing the likelihood of aggressive behavior.

Environmental factors also play a significant role. Dogs can become territorial and aggressive when they perceive a threat to their home or family. Situations such as loud noises, crowds, or the presence of other animals can trigger a defensive response. Understanding these triggers and ensuring dogs are exposed to various environments and experiences in a controlled manner can help mitigate the risk of attacks.

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Socialize Dogs from a Young Age

Preventing dog attacks begins with responsible pet ownership. Dog owners should ensure their pets are well-trained and socialized from an early age. Training should include basic commands and positive reinforcement techniques to encourage good behavior. Regular exposure to different people, animals, and environments can help dogs become well-adjusted and less prone to aggression.

Additionally, maintaining control of your dog at all times is crucial. This includes using a leash in public spaces and ensuring your yard is secure to prevent escapes. Understanding and respecting your dog’s body language and knowing when to remove them from potentially stressful situations can also help prevent aggressive incidents.

By being proactive and attentive, dog owners can significantly reduce the risk of their pets becoming involved in attacks.

Community Measures to Enhance Safety

Communities can play a pivotal role in preventing dog attacks by fostering a safe and respectful environment for residents and pets. Establishing designated dog parks and off-leash areas can allow dogs to exercise and socialize safely. These areas should be well-maintained and monitored to remain secure and clean.

Public education campaigns can also be effective. Informing residents about responsible dog ownership, understanding canine behavior, and what to do in an encounter with an aggressive dog can increase community awareness and safety. Additionally, implementing and enforcing local leash laws and pet containment ordinances can help prevent incidents and ensure a safer neighborhood for everyone.

Recognize Signs of Aggression in Dogs

Identifying the early signs of aggression in dogs is crucial for preventing attacks and ensuring safety. Here are key indicators of aggression in dogs:

  • Growling: A dog that growls is often warned to stay away. This vocalization is a common indicator that the dog feels threatened or uncomfortable. 
  • Snarling or Baring Teeth: When a dog bares its teeth or snarls, it signals that it may be ready to bite. This is a more aggressive warning that should not be ignored. 
  • Stiff Body Posture: A dog that suddenly becomes rigid or holds a tense posture may be preparing to react defensively. This can indicate that the dog is on edge and might attack. 
  • Intense Staring: Dogs that lock their gaze and stare intently at a perceived threat may be assessing the situation and preparing to act. This intense focus can precede aggressive behavior. 
  • Raised Hackles: When the fur along a dog’s back and neck stands up, it indicates heightened arousal and readiness to defend itself. Raised hackles are a physical sign of stress or fear. 
  • Lunging: A dog that lunges forward, even if restrained by a leash or barrier, is ready to attack. This aggressive move is often accompanied by barking or growling. 
  • Barking in a Deep, Repetitive Manner: Deep, repetitive barking often accompanies other aggressive signals and is a vocal warning to potential threats. 
  • Snapping or Nipping: A dog that snaps or nips without full force is often issued a warning. This behavior indicates that the dog is on the verge of biting.


Safe Interaction Tips for Non-Owners

Knowing how to interact safely is crucial for those who do not own dogs but frequently encounter them in their community. When approaching a dog, ask the owner for permission before petting or interacting with the animal. Approach slowly and calmly, allowing the dog to sniff you and get comfortable before making sudden movements.

Avoid making loud noises or sudden gestures that could startle the dog. It’s also important not to run away from a dog, as this can trigger their instinct to chase. If a dog seems anxious or aggressive, it’s best to maintain a safe distance and avoid confrontation. Educating children on these safe interaction tips is vital, as they are more likely to engage with unfamiliar dogs.

Know What to Do If a Dog Approaches Aggressively

Knowing how to respond can help minimize injuries and ensure safety in the unfortunate event of a dog attack. If a dog approaches aggressively, stay calm and avoid sudden movements. Use a firm voice to command the dog to “stay” or “go home.” If an attack is imminent, use anything available (like a bag or jacket) to put between yourself and the dog to protect yourself.

If you are bitten, seek medical attention immediately, even if the wound appears minor. Dog bites can cause significant injuries and infections that require prompt treatment. Report the incident to local animal control authorities and document the details, including the dog’s description and owner’s contact information.

Legal assistance may be necessary to address medical expenses and other damages resulting from the attack.




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We strive to provide the latest valuable information for pet lovers with accuracy and fairness. If you would like to add to this post or advertise with us, don’t hesitate to reach us. If you see something that doesn’t look right, contact us!


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Animal Behavior

7 Dog Behaviors You Shouldn’t Ignore



7 Dog Behaviors You Shouldn't Ignore
7 Dog Behaviors You Shouldn't Ignore

Last Updated on June 25, 2024 by Dogs Vets

7 Dog Behaviors You Shouldn’t Ignore

When it comes to understanding our furry friends, there’s a lot more going on beneath the surface than meets the eye. Dogs, with their wagging tails and soulful eyes, have a myriad of ways to communicate with us.

As pet owners, it’s essential to be in tune with these behaviors to ensure our dogs are happy, healthy, and well-adjusted.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into seven crucial dog behaviors you need to take note of. Let’s embark on this enlightening journey together!


1. Tail Wagging: More Than Just Happiness

Your Dog's Tail-Wagging Could Be a Bad ...

The Tale of the Tail

The tail is often considered a barometer of a dog’s emotional state. However, not all tail wags signify happiness. The position, speed, and direction of the wag can tell us a lot about what a dog is feeling.

Types of Tail Wags:

  • High and Rapid Wagging: This usually indicates excitement or joy. Your dog is likely thrilled to see you or is anticipating something fun, like playtime.
  • Low and Slow Wagging: This can be a sign of insecurity or submission. If the tail is tucked between the legs, it may indicate fear.
  • Stiff Wagging: When a dog’s tail is stiff and wagging slowly, it could mean that they are feeling cautious or potentially threatened.
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Understanding Your Dog’s Language

To better understand your dog’s tail wags, observe the context. Are they meeting a new person? Are they in a new environment? By considering these factors, you can better interpret their tail language and respond appropriately.

2. Barking: The Many Voices of Dogs

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Decoding the Bark

Barking is one of the most common forms of communication in dogs. However, not all barks are created equal. Dogs bark for various reasons, and each type of bark serves a different purpose.

Types of Barks:

  • Alert Barking: This is a quick, sharp bark intended to alert you to something unusual. It could be a stranger at the door or an unfamiliar sound.
  • Demand Barking: This is when your dog is trying to get your attention or wants something specific, like food or a toy.
  • Fearful Barking: This bark is often higher-pitched and accompanied by other signs of fear, such as trembling or cowering.
  • Playful Barking: These barks are usually more repetitive and accompanied by a wagging tail and playful body language.

Responding to Barking

Understanding why your dog is barking is the first step in addressing it. If it’s demand barking, you might need to ignore it until they stop. For fearful barking, comforting and reassuring your dog can help alleviate their anxiety.


3. Chewing: A Window into Your Dog’s Mind

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The Need to Chew

Chewing is a natural behavior for dogs. It helps keep their teeth clean, alleviates boredom, and can even reduce anxiety. However, excessive or destructive chewing can be problematic.

Common Reasons for Chewing:

  • Teething: Puppies chew to relieve the discomfort of teething.
  • Boredom: Dogs left alone for long periods may chew to entertain themselves.
  • Anxiety: Dogs may chew to soothe themselves when they are anxious.

Managing Chewing Behavior

Providing appropriate chew toys and keeping personal items out of reach can help manage your dog’s chewing. Additionally, ensuring your dog gets plenty of physical and mental stimulation can reduce boredom-related chewing.


4. Digging: Understanding This Instinctive Behavior

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Why Dogs Dig

Digging is another natural behavior rooted in a dog’s instincts. While it can be frustrating for owners who cherish their gardens, understanding why dogs dig can help in managing this behavior.

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Reasons for Digging:

  • Seeking Comfort: Dogs might dig to create a cool spot to lie down.
  • Hunting Instincts: Some breeds have strong hunting instincts and dig to find small animals or insects.
  • Boredom and Anxiety: Like chewing, digging can be a sign of boredom or anxiety.

Controlling Digging

To curb digging, provide a designated digging area for your dog or increase their physical activities to tire them out. If anxiety is the root cause, consider providing calming solutions or consulting a vet.


5. Jumping: When Enthusiasm Takes Over

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Jumping Up on People

Jumping up is a common behavior, especially in young dogs. While it might seem cute at first, it can become problematic if not addressed early.

Why Dogs Jump:

  • Greeting: Dogs often jump to greet people face-to-face.
  • Excitement: When overly excited, dogs may jump to express their feelings.
  • Attention-Seeking: Jumping can be a way to get your attention.

Training Against Jumping

Teaching your dog the “sit” command can be an effective way to curb jumping. Reward your dog when they sit calmly instead of jumping up. Consistency and patience are key.


6. Licking: A Multifaceted Behavior

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Why Dogs Lick

Licking is a common dog behavior with various meanings. It’s essential to understand the context to determine why your dog is licking.

Reasons for Licking:

  • Affection: Dogs often lick their owners to show affection.
  • Grooming: Licking helps dogs clean themselves and can be a grooming behavior.
  • Anxiety: Some dogs lick to soothe themselves when they are anxious.
  • Medical Issues: Excessive licking can sometimes indicate an underlying medical issue, such as allergies or infections.

Managing Licking Behavior

If your dog’s licking becomes excessive, it’s essential to consult with a vet to rule out medical issues. For behavioral licking, providing distractions and engaging your dog in play can help.


7. Growling: A Warning Sign

Play growl

Understanding Growling

Growling is often perceived as a negative behavior, but it’s an important form of communication. It serves as a warning and can prevent aggressive incidents if interpreted correctly.

Why Dogs Growl:

  • Fear: Dogs may growl when they feel threatened or scared.
  • Possessiveness: Some dogs growl to protect their food, toys, or territory.
  • Pain: Dogs in pain may growl to signal discomfort.

Responding to Growling

Never punish a dog for growling, as this can suppress a critical warning signal. Instead, try to identify and address the underlying cause of the growl. If your dog growls out of fear or possessiveness, consider consulting a professional trainer.

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Conclusion: Understanding and Responding to Dog Behaviors

Being attuned to your dog’s behaviors is crucial for a harmonious relationship. By understanding the reasons behind their actions, you can provide a supportive and nurturing environment that caters to their needs.

Remember, patience and consistency are vital in addressing and modifying any unwanted behaviors.


Why does my dog wag its tail when it sees me?

Your dog wags its tail when it sees you as a sign of excitement and happiness. It’s their way of expressing joy and affection towards you.

How can I stop my dog from barking excessively?

To stop excessive barking, identify the cause and address it. Ensure your dog gets enough exercise and mental stimulation. Training commands like “quiet” can also help manage barking.

What are the best chew toys for dogs?

The best chew toys are durable, safe, and appropriate for your dog’s size and chewing strength. Toys like Kong, Nylabone, and rubber balls are popular choices.

Why does my dog dig holes in the yard?

Your dog may dig holes due to boredom, hunting instincts, or to create a cool spot to lie down. Providing ample exercise and a designated digging area can help reduce this behavior.

How can I stop my dog from jumping on guests?

Teach your dog the “sit” command and reward them for sitting calmly. Consistently enforce this behavior with guests to prevent jumping.

Is it normal for dogs to lick themselves excessively?

While some licking is normal, excessive licking can indicate allergies, infections, or anxiety. If your dog licks excessively, consult with a vet.

What should I do if my dog growls at me?

If your dog growls, do not punish them. Try to understand the cause of the growl, whether it’s fear, possessiveness, or pain, and address the underlying issue. Consulting a professional trainer can also be beneficial.

By understanding these key dog behaviors and how to respond to them, you’ll foster a deeper bond with your furry friend and ensure their well-being and happiness.

Remember, each dog is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Patience, love, and understanding are the cornerstones of a happy and healthy relationship with your dog.



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Dog behavior

The Role of Dog Owners’ Liability in Cases of Brain Injury in Children



The Role of Dog Owners' Liability in Cases of Brain Injury in Children

Last Updated on June 19, 2024 by Dogs Vets


Brain injury in children can have profound and lasting effects on their health, development, and quality of life. When these injuries result from dog attacks, the situation becomes even more complex and challenging for families.

Dog owners are legally responsible for ensuring their pets do not pose a danger to others, especially vulnerable children. Understanding the nuances of dog owners’ liability in these cases is crucial for pursuing justice and securing compensation for the affected child.

For families dealing with the devastating impact of a child’s TBI from a dog attack, seeking guidance from an experienced attorney for brain injury victims is essential. These professionals can provide the necessary support to navigate the legal landscape and help families secure the compensation needed for their child’s recovery.

This article explores the key aspects of dog owners’ liability in brain injury cases involving children and outlines how families can protect their children’s interests.

Understanding Dog Owners’ Liability

Dog owners are responsible for controlling their pets and preventing harm to others. In many places, strict liability laws hold owners accountable for injuries caused by their dogs, regardless of the dog’s history of aggression. This means that even if a dog has never bitten anyone before, the owner could still be liable for a brain injury caused by an attack. These laws ensure that victims can receive compensation without proving the owner’s negligence.

Dog owners can still be held accountable under negligence or “one-bite” rules in areas without strict liability.

These rules require showing that the owner knew or should have known about the dog’s potential for aggression and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent harm. This often involves demonstrating that the owner did not properly restrain or supervise the dog. Understanding these legal principles is crucial for holding dog owners accountable and securing the child’s recovery resources.

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The Severity of Brain Injury from Dog Attacks

Brain injury from dog attacks is particularly severe due to the force and impact involved. Children, with their smaller size and developing brains, are especially vulnerable to serious injuries. A dog’s bite or the physical force during an attack can lead to significant brain trauma, such as concussions, skull fractures, or extensive brain damage.

These injuries can have immediate and long-term effects on a child’s cognitive, physical, and emotional health.

Recovering from a brain injury often requires extensive medical treatment, rehabilitation, and ongoing support. The impact can hinder a child’s ability to learn, interact, and perform daily activities.

Families must manage the immediate medical challenges and the long-term implications for their child’s development. Addressing these challenges requires comprehensive care and a deep understanding of the impact of the injury.

Legal Recourse for Families

Families of children who suffer brain injury from dog attacks have various options for seeking justice and compensation. Filing a personal injury lawsuit against the dog owner can help cover medical treatment, rehabilitation costs, and other damages. This legal action is vital for providing the financial support necessary for the child’s recovery and long-term care.

Additionally, families may pursue claims against other parties, such as landlords or caretakers, who might share responsibility for the dog’s behavior. Working with a skilled attorney can help families navigate these complex legal processes, ensuring all responsible parties are held accountable, and the child receives needed compensation for their recovery and future needs.

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The Importance of Medical Documentation

Thorough medical documentation is crucial in cases of brain injury resulting from dog attacks, especially those involving severe craniocerebral injuries. Detailed records from the initial treatments, ongoing care, and specialist evaluations provide essential evidence in legal proceedings. These documents help establish the severity of the injury, its impact on the child’s life, and the expected future medical needs and costs.

Families should diligently maintain comprehensive records of all medical visits, treatments, therapies, and related expenses. This detailed documentation supports the legal case and assists in planning for the child’s long-term care and rehabilitation.

Accurate and thorough medical records, particularly when dealing with serious craniocerebral injuries, are key to building a strong case for compensation and ensuring the child’s ongoing needs are adequately met.

Preventive Measures and Community Awareness

Preventing dog attacks and the resulting traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) in children involves proactive steps by dog owners and community efforts to promote safety. Here are key strategies to enhance safety and awareness:

For Dog Owners:

  • Training and Supervision: Ensure dogs are properly trained and supervised, especially around children. Well-trained and controlled dogs are less likely to pose a threat.
  • Use of Leashes and Veterinary Care: Keep dogs on leashes in public areas and maintain regular veterinary check-ups. Addressing health issues and spaying/neutering can reduce aggression.

Community Education and Support:

  • Public Awareness: Launch campaigns to educate the public about safe dog interactions and responsible pet ownership, including tips for preventing dog attacks.
  • Educational Programs: Host workshops at schools and community centers to teach families how to interact safely with dogs and understand their behavior.
  • Local Policies and Enforcement: Support local policies like leash laws and training requirements and advocate for strict enforcement to enhance community safety.
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Emotional and Psychological Impact on Families

The emotional and psychological toll of a brain injury from a dog attack extends beyond the physical injury. Children and their families often face significant emotional trauma, including fear, anxiety, and stress. The child may develop a lasting fear of dogs, affecting their ability to engage in normal activities.

Families may also struggle emotionally as they cope with their child’s recovery and adjust to changes in their daily lives. Support from counselors, therapists, and support groups can provide valuable assistance, helping families manage the long-term effects of a brain injury.

Addressing the emotional and psychological impact is crucial for the overall well-being and recovery of the child and their family.


Steps to Take Following a Dog-Related Brain Injury Incident

When a child suffers a brain injury from a dog attack, immediate action is crucial. First, urgent medical attention must be sought to address and stabilize the injury. Quick and comprehensive care can significantly improve the child’s recovery.

After ensuring medical care, thoroughly document the incident. Gather details about the attack’s location, time, and circumstances, and collect witness statements and any available video or photographic evidence.

Consulting with a knowledgeable attorney can help families navigate the legal complexities and pursue compensation, ensuring all responsible parties are held accountable. The child receives the necessary support for their recovery and future well-being.




Fact Check

We strive to provide the latest valuable information for pet lovers with accuracy and fairness. If you would like to add to this post or advertise with us, don’t hesitate to reach us. If you see something that doesn’t look right, contact us!

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